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Nhs Trust Bosses Slam £600M Hospital Fines Over Patient Targets

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http://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/mar/29/nhs-bosses-slam-600m-hospital-fines-over-patient-targets

Hospitals are being fined £600m a year for missing key NHS patient treatment targets in what bosses claim is a “shortsighted” system that hits patients and pushes them deeper into debt.

NHS Providers, which represents hospital trusts, says that the fines levied by GP groups are nonsensical, given that about 90% of trusts are in deficit and the sector is due to end the financial year later this week an estimated £2.8bn in the red.

“NHS trust chief executives tell us they are intensely frustrated by these fines and see them as shortsighted, counterproductive and reflecting a sense of denial about how serious the problems facing hospital, community, mental health and ambulance services really are,” said Chris Hopson, chief executive of NHS Providers.

Penalties are being imposed on trusts across England for failing to treat patients waiting for A&E, cancer and non-urgent care quickly enough, even though almost all hospitals are struggling to meet the growing demand from patients. One trust – Bart’s in London – was fined nearly £53m last year.

A trust is fined £120 every time its failure to treat an A&E patient within four hours leads to it breaching the duty to deal with 95% of such cases within four hours. There is a £300 fine every time staff fail to treat a patient on the non-urgent referral-to-treatment waiting list within 18 weeks, and the trust then cannot attend to 92% of such cases within the required timescale.

Perhaps Jeremy Hunt should have his salary fined as well for failing?

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I wish, it's rare to see someone who's surname really does rhyme with ones true self....

Private Eye keep managing to 'mis-spell' his surname in their 'Cameron Free School' newsletter. :lol:

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